Landplan Associates produced a design that created a new series of wide, hand-carved, silver-grey granite curved steps of generous proportions to fit more sympathetically into the existing sloping site contours in comparison with the previous situation. This design also allowed for a more generously dimensioned and useable central paving area.
The design was constructed on site with paving materials supplied by Hardscape Ltd and consisting of a combination of large grey Chinese granite paving slabs and interlocking curved Chinese granite steps set off by the warmer tones of Wienerberger’s Hague Cream Waal-format Dutch paving. These buff-coloured sandfaced bricks were laid flexibly on edge, as traditionally done in the Netherlands, on a compacted bed of sand with brushed in joints.
The large grey slabs were positioned at the higher level in front of the Forum building and were dimensioned to align with the existing internal paving within the Forum building itself. This allowed a seamless visual continuation of the paving joints through the glass facade of the building.
The steps were designed to lead from the building down onto the lower performance area and were paved with the same granite material cut into smaller paving units of varying width. A central circle was paved with hand cut silver grey granite setts.
As brick figures highly in the designs in the Centre of Norwich, Werner de Bock placed a special emphasis on the use of this material. As much as the look of the Plain was critical to the success of the finished project, the designer was also keen to use brick that would be durable and have a non-slip surface to allow for the fact that most of the brick paving is on a gradient.
LED uplighters were incorporated into the curved granite step units, delineating the end of steps as they fade into the paving slope, and highlighting the stainless steel handrails. A large solid grey granite vertical retaining wall element also serves as an engraved Millennium Plain place name totem sign.
Pop-up underground power and data supply columns were built into the design so that the sound and lighting associated with performances could be achieved without the use of, or minimising the need for, cumbersome surface trailing leads. Separate service access points were incorporated to allow ‘plug-in’ BBC outside broadcasting cameras. Special high power three phase supply cabling and connection facilities were installed to accommodate the installation of the wintertime ice rink.
Pavers Ltd, also known as Pavers Shoes, is a family-owned footwear business operating in the UK and Ireland. Pavers currently has more than 100 stores, all managed from the head office in York.
The company has grown rapidly in recent years, both in retail operations (with further shops planned throughout 2014) and online. In 2011, Pavers launched its 24-hour TV footwear shopping channel on Sky 669 to allow customers to purchase shoes in their own homes via their television.
Pavers was established by Catherine Paver in 1971, with a £300 bank loan (equivalent to £4,000 in 2016), initially by organising shoe parties with clearance stock from shoe catalogues. The first shop was opened in Scarborough, along with stores in York and Hull. The shop in Newcastle soon followed.
The first outlet store was opened in 1996 at the Royal Quays outlet centre in North Shields. The company currently has outlet stores from Loch Lomond in Scotland, to Trerulefoot in the Cornwall.
Pavers continues to be a family-run business, run by Cathy's son Stuart Paver as the managing director. Ian and Graham Paver, Cathy's two other sons, have now both retired.
Stuart, along with Middlesbrough-based Steve Cochrane, owner of the Psyche Department Store, set up a sister company in 2000 to sell footwear online. This company recently amalgamated with Pavers, which brought the online shoe ordering ability with it.
Lifetime achievement award
Founder Cathy Paver was given a lifetime achievement award by her peers at the 2007 Drapers Footwear awards, 36 years after starting the company.
Pavers supports several UK-based and international charities. In 2006, through a limited edition shoe design, they raised £45,000 for Marie Curie Cancer Care.
For the past 10 years, the company has been involved with sponsoring and supporting children in third-world countries. Currently, Pavers is sponsoring three children through Compassion International.
In 2008, Pavers announced the opening of its new business, Pavers England Footprints Limited, in Chennai, India.
Pavers England Limited (PEL) is a joint venture between Pavers Ltd. and the Foresight Group. At a press launch,[when?] Pavers revealed that they expected a sales turnover of $10 million.
As part of the project, Pavers announced they would commission a $3 million footwear design studio in Chennai.